XAA vs. EXA in old hardware support

Alex Deucher alexdeucher at gmail.com
Fri Jun 16 11:57:12 PDT 2006

On 6/16/06, Michael Lorenz <macallan at netbsd.org> wrote:
> Hash: SHA1
> Hello,
> just a stupid question - a while ago I wrote an XFree86 driver for the
> Weitek P9100 graphics chip found in Tadpole SPARCbook 3GX and similar
> laptops. ( the P9100 driver in XFree86 3.x wasn't really helpful - this
> P9100 has an SBus interface and does a few things rather differently.
> It also lacks the VGA part. )
> So the question is - the driver of course uses XAA primitives. Should I
> bother with EXA when porting it over to xorg? There is no hardware
> support for alpha-blending or anything like that - just plain old
> rectangles, area copies, lines, clipping, colour expansion.
> The same goes for suncg6 - I added support for most of the hardware
> acceleration these old critters offer ( didn't bother with pattern
> fills but that's trivial to add ).

I would say it's up to you.  EXA is the future, but I don't see XAA
going anywhere anytime soon.  For that hardware with EXA all you'd
really have to worry about is solids and copies (and possibly hostdata
blits for UTS depending on the performance) so it's somewhat less code
to port.


> have fun
> Michael
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